Tomatoes are an extremely healthy food which, unlike many other vegetables, tend to maintain many of their excellent properties, even after being cooked. This is important because by cooking tomatoes, you can concentrate the benefits of tomatoes into one much smaller package.
In the U.S., leading causes of death tend to be chronic diseases, such as cancer and cardiovascular disease. Oxidative stress, caused by having too many free radicals and not enough antioxidants in the body, appears to play a significant role in several chronic diseases. Eating tomato based products provides your body with antioxidants which can help lower this oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress is believed to contribute to various health problems. For example, oxidative stress can be a factor that can increase rick for various neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, and ALS. Oxidation has been shown to play a pivotal role in these neurodegenerative processes. (Oxidative Stress and Neurodegenerative Diseases: A Review of Upstream and Downstream Antioxidant Therapeutic Options).
As if the neurodegenerative diseases listed above aren’t bad enough, oxidative stress can increase the likelihood of tumors and cancer. Additionally, the same process also causes malfunctions with the pancreas and is related to Diabetes. Further, the oxidizing process is related directly to things like inflammation and aging.
In short, oxidation is one of the major players in many of the diseases that Americans suffer with today. The best way to get antioxidants is by eating foods that contain them. In fact, a study of lycopene, the antioxidant prevalent in tomatoes, showed that taking a supplement did not give patients the benefits that actually eating the food did. (Effect of Lycopene Supplementation on Oxidative Stress: An Exploratory Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials, 2013).
In addition to helping your body fight all of the diseases listed above, eating tomatoes has been shown to help women avoid osteoporosis. Also, eating a diet rich in tomato based products has shown to help lower total cholesterol and triglycerides. A 2001 study studied the way tomato extract tends to limit blood platelets from sticking together. This study determined that eating tomatoes may be helpful both to prevent and treat cardiovascular disease. (Effects of tomato extract on human platelet aggregation in vitro., 2001).
Despite the fact that the health benefits of eating tomatoes have been studied a lot, it appears that there may be more to study. Tomatoes include several unusual nutrients that appear to be helpful in fighting disease. There are several specific nutrients found in tomatoes that are believed to help the body fight diseases, but those have not all been studied as of yet.
Believe it or not, fighting cancer, aging and inflammation, some studies have also indicated that people who eat a tomato rich diet are less likely to be obese than those who don’t. Also, tomatoes are a good source of Vitamin A, which supports bone growth, healthy vision and can help your skin repel viruses and bacteria. Tomatoes are also a good source of Vitamin C, which is believe to help protect the immune system, prevent cardiovascular disease, eye disease, and even is thought to help protect from skin wrinkling. Last, but not least, tomatoes are a good source of Vitamin E which, like lycopene, is a powerful antioxidant that can help repair damaged cells.
In short tomatoes are a superfood, and eating them can help your health in several ways.)Eating tomato rich condiments and sauces,( Like 78 Brand Ketchup that contains 78% tomato solids) along with a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, is a great way to help your body stave off oxidation. This can reduce the risk of some cancers, can reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, and can even reduce premature aging. Not only that, eating a diet rich in tomatoes may help you to control your weight. If you want to be healthier, eat more tomatoes!
Fun Fact – Did you know that tomatoes are really a fruit, not a vegetable? This is because they have seeds and grow from a flowering plant. Fun Fact – Despite the fact that tomatoes are biologically fruits, in 1893 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Nix v. Heddon that they are vegetables for purposes of tariffs.